The Odisha government on Thursday announced some welfare measures for working journalists in the state, which include Rs four lakh financial assistance to the family in the event of death of a scribe, a minister said.

The announcement came barely a week within the state government implementing the Gopabandhu Sambadika Swasthya Bima Jojana covering health insurance worth Rs two lakh for journalists.

While the family of a working journalist will be entitled to get Rs four lakh in the event of his death, a top up financial assistance will be provided with the approval of the Director of Medical Education and Training to the health insurance benefit for critical illness if the expenditure exceeds Rs two lakh, Information and Public Relation Minister Pratap Jena said.

Three per cent interest subvention each up to Rs 25 lakh house building loans, four wheeler loan up to Rs four lakh and two wheeler loan upto Rs 50,000 will be released annually.

The subvention will be released annually after repayment of regular instalments with interest by the loanee scribes, he said.

Financial assistance of Rs two lakh will be provided to a journalist in the event of permanent incapacitation.

Educational assistance to the children of deceased working journalist will be provided at the rate of Rs 1500 per month and Rs 2500 per month for higher studies.

To facilitate 3 days/1 week/2 week training of minimum 25 and maximum 35 journalists within the state in institute like IIMC, training cost upto Rs 10,000 per journalist, will be borne by the government, he said.

Patnaik instructed information and public relations department to implement the benefits immediately.